Dignity lab workers, technologists to picket for improved benefits

Kelly Gooch - Print  | 

Unionized laboratory scientists and technologists at San Francisco-based Dignity Health plan to picket July 9 amid contract negotiations, reports The Sacramento Bee.

The employees, who are represented by Engineers and Scientists of California Local 20, work at Woodland (Calif.) Memorial Hospital, St. Joseph's Medical Center in Stockton, Calif., and Mercy San Juan in Carmichael, Calif. Workers are also slated to distribute leaflets at Mercy Hospital of Folsom (Calif.), Methodist Hospital in Sacramento, Calif., and Mercy General Hospital of Sacramento.

The picketing plans come as negotiations are ongoing for contracts at all of the facilities. Key sticking points in negotiations include health benefits and pay, according to the report.

Michael Aidan, assistant executive director of Engineers and Scientists of California Local 20, told The Sacramento Bee workers specifically take issue with the introduction of a medical premium, which he estimated could be as high as $2,000 annually for some employees.

He also told the publication Woodland-area lab scientists have shared concerns over what they say could potentially be wage inequity among lab scientists who report to different units of the company.

Hospital officials did not address these issues in a statement to Becker's Hospital Review, but did express disappointment in the picketing plans.

"We have been notified by the Engineers and Scientists of California Local 20 that they plan to hold informational picketing sessions at various Dignity Health facilities in the Sacramento Region this week. While we are disappointed in this decision, we remain committed to negotiating with them in good faith and work to resolve the outstanding bargaining issues," the statement reads.

The statement added: "During the informational picket sessions, our hospitals will remain open and all services will continue to be available."

 

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